A slice of French life

In their delicatessen-cum restaurant La Maison, two young Israeli chefs prepare authentic country-style dishes.

French cuisine 520 (photo credit: Courtesy)
French cuisine 520
(photo credit: Courtesy)
It was an unforgettable evening in Tel Aviv. Strolling up Chernikovsky Street, after the Bezalel market towards Allenby, we walked right past it, turned back and then realized that the tiny hole-in-thewall was actually the place we were looking for. Once inside, the smells and atmosphere made us feel as if we had crashed a very happy private party. The small bar was crowded with four men busy drinking and eating and joking with the chef. It was too cold to sit at the small tables outside, so we opted for the one table that was set inside, near rows of bottles of wine and French cider.
A charcuterie during the day, this place is transformed at night into a small bistro that serves meat dishes made from the sausages and cold cuts that are prepared by the two chefs and sold by weight during the day.
Owners and chefs Ben Tidhar and Ian Duvshani learned their trade working in Yoezer, the celebrated restaurant of Shaul Evron in Jaffa.
But their love for that kind of food stems from childhood. Particularly Tidhar, whose grandmothers came from France and Italy.
We started with a plate of cold cuts, pates and terrines, made on the premises, served with bread, French mustard, locally made pickles and olives (that were superb). Feeling very continental, we ordered a bottle of French cider (NIS 65), which made us feel as if we were in the countryside of Lyon.
We then had a few more dishes to taste, such as freshly prepared Lyonnaise sausage served with potato puree (NIS 57), and a special of the day, which was shrimps cooked with sausage and a great root vegetables salad on the side. Food kept coming to our tiny table, and each bite was better than the last until we could eat no more.
La Maison is a very different place, unlike any other in Tel Aviv, and the quality of the food is not echoed in the price. So before they realize it and raise their prices, visit La Maison charcuterie.
For a strictly non-kosher Pessah, the La Maison charcuterie offers Eastern European delicacies such as chopped lived, kreplach stuffed with liver, homemade herring, beef bourguignon, corned beef, goose in orange marinade and many more cooked and ready-tocook dishes.
The writer was a guest of the restaurant.

La Maison. Not kosher. 1 Chernikovsky St., Tel Aviv (03) 620-6022